Now Showing: Three Billboard Outside Ebbing, MO

Three Billboards is a movie that garnered a lot of attention throughout the year and won a couple Oscar awards. Namely Francis McDormand (Fargo) for best Actress in a leading role. The movie also stars Woody Harrelson (The Hunger Games), and Sam Rockwell (Moon) who won the Oscar for best actor in a supporting role. 

The movie follows Mildred played by Frances McDormand whose daughter was assaulted and killed by someone who wasn’t caught. The horrific crime lights a fire inside of Mildred and she decides to spend all the money she has left to put up three billboards in Missouri asking Chief Willoughby, played by Woody Harrelson, why the killer of her daughter hadn’t been caught. From there it is a drama about the consequences of the action, and eventually about dealing with uncontrollable grief and anger.

The movie’s strength is the acting.  All the performances felt natural. Most movies have people saying things that don’t sound like something you or I would know. These people talk like they live in a Missouri town. Sometimes they say things that people may find offensive, and the movie never stays away from that. Instead the movie plays it off as a matter of fact. The town really does feel like its own entity. It never is talked about by the movie whether the town or the people in it really are bad, in fact the movie seems to think they are just good people. 

The movie does a great job of showing that most people in Missouri aren’t just stereotypical people like they show in the movies, and I really appreciated that.

The film boasts incredible writing. Even though the movie itself is dark, the movie has a great amount of what I would consider dark comedy. A dark comedy is when something is simultaneously mean or nearly offensive but done in a way that could be found funny. I saw this movie in a crowd of mostly older people and they all loved it. 

There is some bad language from time to time, but I really do think most audiences will appreciate what the writing team did here.

Three Billboards will make a lot of people’s list for best movies of the year. While I personally prefer Blade Runner 2049 and The Shape of Water to this film, it is excellent and one not to be missed. 

I give the movie 9 Billboards outside of Ironton, Missouri out of 10, and I say buy this film.


David Gifford is a college student, the night manager at Town and Country Supermarket in Ironton, a sales rep for The Mountain Echo and a gaming and movie enthusiast.